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28                       Ramavijaya.

to Lakshuman and said, " I have travelled all over the
earth in .search of a husband; but I have not found a
young man as beautiful as yourself. I have become mad
after you, and unless you consent to inarry me, I shall not
live. 1, therefore, implore yon to take me for your wife.
Do not you see how I look ? Can you get elsewhere a
quite young girl like me ?" Lakshuman was not at all
captivated with her charms, but she having much insisted
upon his giving her an answer, he replied, u I have got
my brother and sister-in-law. There they live in a hut. I
cannot do any thing without their consent." " I shall go
to your brother," said the demoness, c* and get a letter
from him consenting to our match/5 Bo saying she went
to Panchawati with her maid-servants and said to Rama,
" I like your brother from the bottom of my heart. I
have made up my mind fco marry him, and he has also pro-
mised me to take me for his wife subject to your approval
of the match. I, therefore, pray that you will kindly pity
me and give me your letter or any other sign signifying
your consent to our marriage.'* Sita was moved with her
manner of address, and requested Rama to comply with
her request. Rama surveyed "her from head to foot ; and
finding her eye-balls upside down, he knew that she waa
Surpanakha in the form of a human being. Rama,, there-
fore, said, u I have no objection to give you my consent
but I shall write it on your back/' " How can you do it,"
replied she, " I feel bashful to show you my back.'* "It
does apt- matter," continued Rama. " There is no one
here/ At last Surpanakha told Rama to write his con-
sent on her back, which the latter wrote and sent her way.
The demoness hastened to the place where Lakshuman
was standing and said, " You see, your brother has con-
sented to our marriage with much pleasure. If you like,
you may go and ask him about it. I am not a liar, you
knqw. He has given me no letter or any sign but he has